Public Info

Branch Out and Learn About Trees

Union County, NJ – Did you know that one tree can absorb as much as 48 pounds of carbon dioxide per year? Trees also trap dust particles and other pollutants, and they help keep our neighborhoods cool in the summer. These are just some of the many environmental benefits of planting and caring for trees in our community.

If you’re interested in learning more about trees and you enjoy teaching children, the Union County Master Tree Stewards program is seeking volunteers now.

“Trees make significant contributions to the quality of life in our community,” said Freeholder Chairman Christopher Hudak. “Each year, through the Master Tree Steward volunteer program, Union County residents teach hundreds of school children about trees and their benefits to our neighborhoods and environment.”

The Master Tree Steward program is a free educational program that trains adult volunteers to teach children about trees. Tree Stewards learn how trees grow and reproduce, how to plant trees, why trees are important to our environment, and fun ways to share this knowledge with children.

Homework consists of light reading and a simple project. There are no exams or quizzes. After completing the training program, graduates are provided with a teaching kit and supplies, and are scheduled to teach several one-hour programs for grade school students this winter and spring.

This program is one of the many adult volunteer opportunities offered by the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County. Volunteers are essential to the successful implementation of the Master Tree Steward program.

The 2014 Master Tree Steward training sessions will be held on Wednesdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., for 12 weeks starting on September 3. Your commitment is short term, but importance and impact are long term.

The classroom training sessions will be located at the Extension offices in the County Services building in Westfield, at 300 North Avenue East.

For an application or more information, contact Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County 4-H Agent James Nichnadowicz at the Extension offices, 908-654-9854, or email

The Rutgers Cooperative Extension is supported in part by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. It offers a wide variety of programs and activities for all ages. For more information visit the Extension online at

Photo (cropped): by Nicholas A. Tonelli via creative commons license.


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